To play Disc Golf in Illinois you need a disc or Frisbee. The object is to throw the disc into a metal basket or target in the least amount throws. The rules are very in-line with ball golf except, instead of using clubs and balls, we use discs. Many look at the sport and consider it a fad, however once played a few times those thoughts disappear. In 1975 the “basket” was formally made and we consider Disc Golf actually born turning into a real sport.
Disc Golf Shopping is located in Elgin, Illinois so…. we may have some biased opinions about courses in our area. However, others can attest to the nicely laid out courses. To date, 8/28/2018 there are approximately 257 Disc Golf Courses in Illinois! Here’s our Top 3 Rated Courses for Disc Golf in Illinois:
Anna Page Park in Rockford could be considered 3 separate courses. We consider it a day trip to play all! The first course, East was established in 1986 and has two separate concrete teepads, Easy and Hard. This 18 hole course has a total length of 5501 ft to 6005 ft depending on which tee placement you use. Mach III Baskets placed near wooded/thick brush to increase the difficulty. Hole 5 is the longest hole, sloping downwards going 418 ft for the Easy Teepad & 661 ft for the hard. In 2016 new Tee Signs were installed allowing for better navigation of the course.
That was just one Illinois Disc Golf Course?! On to the West, established in 2004 this is the second course built in this great park. Just like the previous course, it’s 18 holes with two separate pin locations, easy and hard with a single concrete teepad. The distance for the short pins is 5033 ft while the long pins are at 7600 ft. It’s hillier than the East and the difficulty increases as some prairie grass bears down on you. The baskets used are the Mach III and once again they are very well marked defining the next hole.
The newest of all the courses is the South Disc Golf spot which was established in 2013. It’s obvious they keep increasing the difficulty on each new course they make! This course is once again hilly and heavily wooded. They didn’t want to keep it consistent and went with some DISCatcher baskets with artificial turf opposed to concrete teepads this time around. It only has one placement for the baskets, but that’s ok as it’s still a beauty to play at a distance of 6334 ft. There are multiple tunnel shots creating a challenging course requiring you to up your game.
How do we tackle a new course after a park with 3 courses in one?! The City of Elgin in Illinois established this course in 2017 and it’s quite hilly for Illinois and portions are wooded. With a distance of 6195-6557 feet depending on where the baskets are situated makes either placements a difficult course. Hole 9 is a complete monster at 649 feet downhill which makes you feel amazing taking your distance driver and seeing it fly down the range. This course reminds you of a professional course as the Par 4’s are tough and scoring above par are hard to come by!
We would not recommend this course for beginners as the narrow fairways will make shanking discs to the side a consistent struggle to find your disc. It’s also a long hike up and down so be ready to break a sweat. If you do not know the course, the other downside is the signage seems to be a bit off making you unsure where to go after you finished. Enough with the negatives, this is a difficult, challenging course that will make any advanced Disc Golfer fall in love with the course.
Another recently added course established in 2014 has two separate teepads and basket placements. The easier placements are 5020 ft and is called the Fairfield White that uses DISCatcher baskets where the open prairie gives beginners some easy playing. It was specifically designed to still challenge beginners and intermediates, but not deter. The more challenging course is called The Gold as it was designed for the pro looking for Disc Golf to become a difficult game.
The Gold course is set to 8075 ft with hilly and wooded holes throughout. Water is in play on multiple holes with hole 8 occasionally you will need some boots to play. Unfortunately both the White and Gold courses share the same fairways, so it gets quite crowded on the early holes and lines do form to start playing due to its popularity. This is another course where beginners are not recommended to play as losing a disc is very easy to accomplish; stick with the White course!
Let’s first say, if your club is not listed here and would like to be, reach out to us at Disc Golf Shopping as we would love to encourage Illinois Disc Golf players to join your nearby club! In addition if you want additional details on current clubs listed or removed, please reach out.
If you’re considering joining a Tournament, we strongly suggest joining a club before doing so. Many clubs offer discounts for PDGA membership as it’s a requirement to join. They will also offer valuable knowledge and even setup tournament-like setting play. A common type of Disc Golf play is Doubles. You have four players and split into 2. Both players throw their discs like normal, however after they are done, as a team they choose which throw they want to keep. You can say beginners love this game and experts enjoy carrying the up and coming professionals!
Let us first explain the different classifications and divisions. There are Professionals, Amateurs and Junior Divisions along with occasional female-only divisions. The main difference is Professionals compete for money while the others compete for awards and trophies.
Professionals are then classified by Male or Female along with age. MPO is under 40, MP40 is 40+ masters and MP50 and these same goes for Females, FPO, FP40, etc. The Amateur divisions, are broken down into:
Advanced, Intermediate, Recreational, Novice, Advanced Women, Intermediate Women, Recreational Women, Novice Women, Amateur Master 40+, Amateur Master Women 40+ and by increments of 5 all the way up to 70.
Once you start playing in multiple tournaments, you will start to accumulate a player rating. This rating will slowly deteriorate if you don’t play for a period of time. Advanced players will be a rating of >=935 while Intermediate is < 935.
Now any serious Illinois Disc Golfer knows about Discraft Ledgestone Insurance Open! The courses played for this tournament are Bradley Park in Peoria, Lake Eureka in Eureka, McNaughton Park in Pekin, Meiddo at Westwood Park in Morton, Northwood Park in Morton, Sunset Hills DGC in Pekin, Washington Park in Washington and last but not least Wildlife Prarie Park in Hanna City. In 2018 we crowned a new champion of Nate Sexton bringing home winnings of $7,000 dollars.
Past Winners At Ledgestone
2017 – Josh Anthon
2016 – Paul McBeth
2015 – Simon Lizotte
2014 –Nikko Locastro
2013 – Devan Owens
2012 – Nikko Locastro
2011 – Allen Hermosillo